African Mythology

The Gods and Spirits of Africa


Ashanti legendary mortal

Picture of the African legendary mortal Dubiaku from our African mythology image library. Illustration by Chas Saunders.

Legendary Hero Kid and Outwitter of Death

Burdened with eleven sons, Dubiaku’s overworked mother couldn’t cope and asked the Gods for assistance. To solve the problem they helpfully sent Death.

When Dubiaku’s mother said: “Dearest son, I’m going out tonight, but nice Mrs Death is coming to babysit”, no-one could blame him for being slightly suspicious. That evening, Mrs Death turned up with eleven of her own children, making it a kind of double babysit.

Dubiaku was on his worst behavior. He stayed up way past bedtime chewing tobacco, taking snuff and demanding snacks until Mrs Death didn’t know if she was coming or going. She decided to go outside and bang her head against a tree. Meanwhile Dubiaku got busy...

Ten minutes later Mrs Death returned to the nursery with a sore head and a renewed sense of purpose. She ate the eleven children as she had been asked, and went to kiss her own children goodnight. Too late she discovered that Dubiaku had tinkered with the sleeping arrangements and sneaked his brothers out the back where they were hiding in a tree. Mrs Death had just eaten her own children. Cue bad attack of indigestion.

Screeching with rage, she dashed outside to find the missing kiddies. As she stood under a tree scratching her head, the cocky little Dubiaku peed on her head. Not very clever. Mrs Death looked up and howled her Falling Down Dead Spell. All the boys fell out of the tree, except for Dubiaku who had already jumped to escape the spell. Mrs Death climbed the tree to make sure she hadn’t missed anyone, and Dubiaku turned the tables by shouting the Falling Down Dead Spell word perfect. Mrs Death fell dead.

By one of those quirks of fate with which mythology abounds, the tree happened to be on the banks of the Water-of-Life river. So our young hero splashed his siblings with handfuls of water to restore them to life. In his exuberance he clumsily allowed a drop or two to splash onto Mrs Death, who sprang up and chased them all. But the boys leapt into the river and swam to safety, all except little Dubiaku who couldn’t swim.

In a terrible rage, Mrs Death began throwing stones at the escapees. She picked up a particularly large one and hurled it towards the opposite bank. But it wasn’t really a stone — it was a cunningly disguised Dubiaku. So the eleven brothers escaped and Mrs Death trudged home in a foul mood.

Dubiaku Facts and Figures

Name: Dubiaku
Pronunciation: Coming soon
Alternative names:

Gender: Male
Type: legendary mortal
Area or people: Ashanti people of Ghana
Celebration or Feast Day: Unknown at present

Role: Unknown at present

Good/Evil Rating: OKAY, not bad
Popularity index: 5561

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Article last revised on May 16, 2019 by Rowan Allen.
Editors: Peter J. Allen, Chas Saunders

References: Coming soon.

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